qr-watering-canSurfing around the Reddit Tasker forum today I came across this post from someone who is looking for help with what I think is a very good idea. Basically the idea is to create reminders using Tasker that can only be dismissed using physical objects, such as QR codes of NFC tags attached to objects. The purpose is to make it much harder to just dismiss a notification and thinking that you’ll remember to do it “later”, then completely forget about it.

The examples in the original post include watering the plants and taking out the trash. You could for instance have an NFC tag on your watering can or your trash cans, and then the only way to dismiss the notification would be to actually scan those NFC tags.

Doing this in Tasker isn’t hard. There are plenty of NFC plug-ins for Tasker out there, and for those of us who don’t have NFC-enabled devices, joaomgcd’s AutoBarcode is a great alternative that allows you to do the same with QR codes. The notification side of things can be done either using Tasker’s built-in Notify (with the Permanent option checked) and Notify Cancel actions, or using the equivalent options in AutoNotification. You trigger the permanent notification using whatever method you want, from a simple profile based on a time and a date to a more complicated todo list system like the one I use myself. Then, create a new profile for the plug-in you’re using for NFC tags or QR codes, and set it up to cancel the permanent notification. That way, the notification will survive any attempt to get rid of it except for doing whatever it asks, like going to the trash can.

Parents might also want to look into turning this into a chore system. Depending on how technically savvy the user is it might be difficult to create a setup that’s tamper-proof, but I do like the idea of a teenager’s phone where the messaging app is deactivated (which is possible) if the trash isn’t taken out.